Randol Honey Farm Winterset, Iowa Randol Honey Blog
Wow where did the year go? We had our family Christmas yesterday, We missed a couple of the grand kids who were with their other grandparents and and the granddaughter who was sick and stayed home with her mother. We missed you Sheri and Mariah. I had pnuemonia 2 weeks ago and my son has it now and other son not feeling very well either. I guess the flu bug has hit our family hard here in the last few weeks.
Just 3 more days and it will be 2015. 2014 has been a good year for the most part, Our hives did not do well, but were split in early spring and all survived and went into winter looking well. We just hope all are still alive and well in late April when we will split them again and hopefully increase our numbers and production. This year we will have to supplement all of our flavored honey with other locally grown honey.
We won't be having baby goats this year until late Spring, so I hope we won't lose them in the bitter cold like we had last January.
After a day in the 30's yesterday we are in the 20's today and colder tomorrow for a couple days and then it is supposed to warm up a little for a few days and cool again. Long range forecast looks to be mostly 30's for January and February. Hope so I don't like cold and the chickens quit laying in the cold. Oh well this is Iowa and I love to live here. Seed catalogs are arriving daily and now I will have time to sit and daydream while sipping hot tea and honey. Happy New Year Everyone. Blessing to you all in the coming year.
Yes I woke up to a little bit more snow. April Fools I know. Just a tease this morning to let us know we live in Iowa and that the weather can change in a instant. There is not enough snow out there that it will be gone when the sun rises high in the sky. The weather a bit cooler.
As I look out my kitchen window I see the horses grazing out back and 4 deer at the corner of the timber. I know it won't last today, but I am tired of snow and now mud from the melting snow.
During the last month, I have sold all of my older baby goats and have 2 more new ones who arrived during the last month. On 3/11/2013 The little black roan doe was born. She was tiny but oh so cute. On 3/23/2013 the brown spotted buck was born. He was a big guy as big as the 12 day old doeling. They don't have names yet. I kind of name them on personalities. Even though she is a purebred Nubian she seems to have more airplane ears that fly as she runs around the barn yard. They both are now running around and kicking up their heals running and jumping. (The picture below is shortly after he was born and still getting his legs under him)
The chickens have really begun to lay now. I get at least 12 eggs every day and occasionally I have gotten as many as 21 so some days a few are sluffing off their duties. Can't wait until I can plant my garden and the farmers markets to start.
It is now 2 in the afternoon and the sun is shining and all the new snow is gone.. The bees have been flying the last few days. I checked them and found a couple of more dead hives yesterday. Not sure why they died as I didn't tear them apart yet, but they still had plenty of honey.
Since I have sold the older kids earlier this month, I now am milking and making soap each day to get ahead for sales this year. I made lemongrass and mint and cactus flower Friday and am making another batch of Red Clover Tea today. Also have a few lotion bars to make along with running low on lip balm.
Our son who is in Afghanistan called last night, was good to hear from him. Hopefully will make it back her sometime in August safe and sound. Well have a good month and I will try to update you on what is going on around here next month.
March 1st and will it come in like a Lion or a Lamb.
Last Thursdays snow storm was minimal for all the attention the weather men and women were saying. Major snow storm coming we didn't know if we were to get 10 or 20 inches ( we live in the 20 inch prediction and only 4-5 came. Now on Monday they predicted a mere 1-3 inches and received around 10 here. No snow predicted for today, but it is snowing again. We will wait to see the amount we get.
The chickens have finally begun to lay again so I have eggs for sale again. Still have 3 goats to kid. The 2 young ones have udders swelling, I am not sure of their due dates so it is a daily checking now. Hope it warms up before they kid.
The last warm days all but one of my hives were flying, 1 loss is not bad, hopefully the rest will be ok when the next warm days appear. This is the time of the year bees starve to death because of cold weather they can't move over to more stores of honey and also the queen is laying and more mouths to feed. We need to make sure they have plenty of honey left, if not we feed them emergency feed of sugar until the dandilions bloom and the willows put out their pollen.
Still snowing now ( flurries they say) we will see what we get.
We woke up to 11 inches of beautiful white snow this morning. My husband ventured to work with 4 wheel drive this morning and was back home by 11. Since I have no orders and no shows in the next week, took the day off and stayed inside all day and kept warm and worked on my website and other things inside I don't take time to do. It has been a very relaxing day.
Went out to do chores at 3 and no one was there to meet me until the feed was put out and the new babies said to forget it they would stay in and let moma go out in the snow. I am sure they will go outside if it is sunny tomorrow.
Happy Birthday to my husband Tom today!
Snow on the ground this morning when we awoke. Colder than we have seen for awhile. Watched the grand daughters Makala and Mariah yesterday and they helped with stocking the Creston Indoor Farmers Market so Matt would have more to sell for Christmas. They put up our Christmas Tree yesterday afternoon, did a very nice job. Took them to their 4- H meeting this morning at 11, where their mother picked them up, and I came home and made a few cheesecake mixes this afternoon for the mail tomorrow.
We have 6 new baby goats born since the day before Thanksgiving. I have only 1 older doe to kid and 4 doelings to kid next spring. I have 1 doe I am milking right now and am very busy trying to get ahead on making soap. Have a good supply of most fragrances and more curing now.
My last market for the year is this Friday and Saturday Downtown Winter Market downtown DesMoines. I hope the weather is good (no snow or ice) cold is ok.
Hi My name is Pat Randol and I was raised on a farm in Clarke County Iowa. Where my family helped raise a few goats, gardening, and my mother raised Collie dogs. I love the country and after I got married we lived in a small town where I did have a back yard garden and finally got the opportunity to move to the country in Winterset Iowa. We own our little bit of heaven on 12 acres. I have 3 goats, 3 dogs, 2 horses, couple dozen chickens and a fairly large garden area. We raise honey bees and I sell excess honey at local farmers markets